Thursday, 10 January 2013

Like Tears in The Rain


It's time for a brief interlude before I undertake my next project here at Images Degrading Forever and it is as good a chance as any to try and describe the process by which I choose what project to do

By using an example of a project I decided to put to one side- that being Archie Goodwin and Al Williamson's BLADE RUNNER




This project had plenty of good things going for it:-

It is a comic drawn in a hyper realistic photo referenced style that is based on a movie, a movie which is itself heavily influenced by comics, like Heavy Metal which both featured material by Al and Archie

That Al Williamson's contribution to science fiction being in way almost directly responsible for Blade Runner being filmed and a comic of it existing, Al having famously drawn Flash Gordon,


Star Wars (which Al of course also drew) being based on Flash Gordon to the extent that Lucas films wanted Al for the comic. 




Star Wars the comic saved Marvel from bankruptcy in the 70s so the Star Wars comic reinvigorated Marvel and the Star Wars movie reinvigorated and changed science fiction, clearing the way to getting a movie like Blade Runner made an actual possibility

That the Blade runner movie is a movie about quite a number of meta-subjects, the question of are you watching the movie or is it watching you, what does it mean to be human and about a 100 other things

That my first experience of Blade Runner was this comic, albeit in a UK Annual reprinting both issues together as I was too young to see the movie at the cinema on release and I had the US issues already in my collection


The downside became apparent on trying to redraw the art complete with dialogue as existing

The detail in the Al Williamson originals can not be possibly overstated, a phenomenal level of detail and a literal mountain of tiny details (especially zip-a-tone or letraset tone) all giving the finished product the same kind of atmosphere that Ridley Scott spent so much time in bringing to the screen


To be able to even have the remotest possibility of being able to reproduce the art I decided I would need to work to 1 comic panel per drawn page, to make one comic book panel as big as my scanner allows to be scanned to enable me to try and draw all the detail I could see..
And the above is my attempt at the first two panels (two separate drawings put together) which might be okay, possibly

Having seen that doing 1 comic panel a page might generate a okay result, the problems of time and patience rear their heads. 

While I thought I probably would be okay with both myself, I doubted that any reader would want to sit through at least one entire year of blog, especially as I was not certain that I would even be able to generate the equivalent of one completed page a week

And also I kind of doubted that I could generate a years worth of worthy blog material to accompany the art

That aside there was clearly some pages to which I could not apply my chosen method, like these two which look simply unbelievable 


There was also many, many panels where dialogue balloons would start on the previous panel and finish on the next one and quite a number of pages where a panel was actually larger and there was smaller panels inset inside it. 

All of this would present a major challenge in terms of what to draw where and how best to stitch it all back together so it would look like one seamless image as intended

Then there was the issue of all that zip-a-tone or letraset tone - In my attempted two panels above I didn't use any each dot is done by hand!

Finally though its a minor issue for me, it would have been my 3rd science fiction comic based on a movie project, following Steranko's Outland and Kirby's 2001 and I feel I need to diversify as much as I can manage

So I have decided to put Blade Runner to one side and for now it remains lost, like those tears in the rain

But of course you readers of this blog, you could let me know if I am right to leave this to one side or not

So what's coming instead of Blade Runner...?




More on this NEXT WEEK

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